Friday, June 05, 2020

Germany requiring gas stations to have EV chargers

From Electrek:

As part of Germany’s new increased electric-vehicle incentive package, the country will require gas stations to offer EV charging. Details about the plan are not yet known, such as the timeline and type of required chargers. But EV advocates quickly praised the move as a boost to electric-car adoption.

BDEW, Germany’s association for energy and water industries, believes that at least 70,000 charging stations and 7,000 fast-charging stations are required to achieve a mass market for EVs in the country. BDEW reports that there are currently about 28,000 stations in Germany.

According to Reuters, electric cars made up only 1.8% of new passenger car registrations last year in Germany, with diesel and petrol cars accounting for 32% and 59.2%, respectively.

I think I agree with Electrek's opinion of this news:

We’re not sold on the idea that gas stations are the best location for EV charging, especially if Level 2, 240-volt charging stations are used. On the other hand, petrol stations situated along expressways and equipped with ultra-fast EV charging make more sense.

Look at where Tesla and Electrify America, among others, are locating quick-charging stations: near amenities, like shopping centers, hotels, and restaurants, where you might want to hang out for 30 minutes.

A 240-volt charging station that adds about 25 to 30 miles in an hour is definitely not the right choice for a gas station. That said, many German gas stations have a level of amenities not offered in the US. Moreover, the visibility of seeing EVs plugged in sends a message that charging is abundant, and range is not an issue.

The decision to require every single gas station to offer EV charging is a little odd. It applies an outdated combustion-oriented frame of mind to new technology. The sentiment is great, but let’s hope the details get sensibly worked out when it comes to implementation.

Maybe Germany has more gas stations with amenities where people theoretically could hang around than in the US, but that doesn't mean people will want to hang around, and still there are all the other gas stations without much in the way of amenities. Ironically, the costs of installation might actually close down some stations that were on the edge of solvency, and I expect there will be more of them shutting down over time. The infrastructure for ICE vehicles will get spotty, and is unlikely to be supported in many places just by adding EV chargers.


Jim Eager said...

Brian, you are missing the obvious. When every gas station has a charging station EVs and chargers will be in everyone's face and become normalized, they will no longer be a fringe or a niche item. Requiring them will not be the last step, it will be the first step. And if the cost drives some stations out of business, so be it.

Snape said...


The flip side of the issue -
if gas stations are required to install an expensive technology that is seldom used, many, especially conservatives, will use it as an in-your-face example of over regulation.

Jim Eager said...

Let them whine about it. We need to stop pulling our punches and bending over backwards so as to not upset those who have demonstrated that they are perfectly willing to destroy constitutional civil society in addition to a stable climate. Time to take the gloves off.

Snape said...

Even an ideal as important and noble as democracy has a downside, which is what we are seeing. Racist, blithering idiots have the freedom to vote and influence government policy.

I’m not sure if taking off the gloves would be any better than pulling punches.

Snape said...

I am starting to feel very uneasy about something.
I live in Oregon, and in all my years here, have never known a conservative who did not own a gun. Most own several. My fellow Democrats on the other hand? Almost invariably DO NOT own a firearm, myself included.

Should the Idiot lose the election, which is looking more and more likely, he will almost certainly claim the outcome was rigged. What if he also encourages his base to ‘take back your country’? Not unlikely, right?
We could again see massive protests, but this time with gun toting hate mongers.

That two month window between election night and Inauguration Day, while Trump still holds power, is scary as hell and something I think we need to start talking about.

Jim Eager said...

And this idea is just dawning on you now?

Snape said...

It’s something I’ve thought about before but never taken too seriously.

Jim Eager said...

With a vicious narcissistic psychopathic El Duce wanna-be in the White House supported by a rabid cult of armed delusional white nationalists, neo fascists and conspiracy believers a lot of people have been taking it very seriously for a quite a while now.

But then they did call those who went to Spain in the 1930s to fight Franco "premature anti-fascists."

Well, we are all Antifa now. And if you aren't, you aren't paying attention.

Snape said...

You should know from my comments that I agree with you 100% with respect to Trump and his supporters, but it’s not enough just to acknowledge the problem and call ourselves anti-fascists.
If he loses the election and things turn violent, what do we do? Fight back? The Trumpers would like nothing better.

Jim Eager said...

"If he loses the election and things turn violent, what do we do? Fight back?"

To put it bluntly, if you don't then you don't deserve a country.

But hopefully you will not need to. The Military has already told Trump loud and clear that he can not count on them to subvert the Constitution, and I'm quite sure they will not stand by and let his cult followers do so.

Barton Paul Levenson said...

If it happens, it will be the idiot militias versus the National Guard, and the militias will lose.

Jim Eager said...

And lose very badly. They are full of bluster and bravado, and like to make anonymous death threats, but while many of them have tactical military training they are poorly organized, disciplined, and led, with minimal logistical support. Just look at the pathetic "invasion" of Venezuela to see how they will stand up against regular military forces in a real firefight.

Or more like recall how local police chief Link Mattocks (Brian Keith) handled blustering citizens militia "leader" Fendall Hwakins (Paul Ford) in Norman Jewison's "The Russians are coming, the Russians Are Coming."

"You broke my sword!"

Snape said...

“To put it bluntly, if you don't then you don't deserve a country.”

This is not only about me of course. In the event that civilians need to fight for their country, then it goes back to this earlier comment, “My fellow Democrats on the other hand? Almost invariably DO NOT own a firearm, myself included.”

Baseball bats against assault rifles aren’t going to get it done, so, are you advocating a call to arms? Do you think Dems need to hold their noses and pay a visit to their local gun shop?

Jim Eager said...

Apparently you didn't read the part after that sentence, but worst comes to worst, remember that most members of the French Resistance didn't own firearms before the Germans invaded and occupied their country either. For the record I don't own a firearm, but I have had firearms training and have fired weapons up to and including a 7.62mm M60 machine gun, and I know plenty of Democrats who hunt and therefor do own firearms. So don't think of yourself as defenseless.

Snape said...

I’ll admit that ‘Almost invariably’ was an exaggeration. The point stands, though, that if worse comes to worst, and American civilians end up fighting each other, the Left will be at a great disadvantage. Such a scenario would lead to a rush by the unarmed to buy guns, and guns could end up harder to come by than toilet paper was a few months ago. Compounded the shortage - gun shop owners’ likely reluctance to sell to those who they view as the opposition.

As for militia versus the National Guard, the Right is spread out among thousands of small towns and communities. The guard’s resources could be stretched very thin.

Then there’s the question of governors - can we trust red-state governors to deploy guardsmen against Trump supporters? I’m not so sure. They might instead AGREE with the president, that the election was stolen, and view the armed protesters as heroes rather than the thugs they are.


You might remember that several Fox News anchors, Lew Dobbs for one, actually sided with those idiot militiamen who in 2016 took control of government property at a wildlife preserve (yeah, another reference to Oregon, this time not so good)

Is it a stretch to think a percentage of conservative governors might put forward the same opinion as Lew?

Snape said...

Here are some stats for gun ownership by party affiliation. The disparity is not as great as I had imagined.

“In the United States between 2016 and 2018, 45 percent of Republicans reported that they owned at least one gun, and 61 percent said that they lived in a household with a gun. In comparison, only 16 percent of Democrats owned at least one gun, and 28 percent lived a gun household.”

Snape said...

Lou, not Lew. Geez!

Phil said...

Back to EVs and gas stations.
Gas stations are not in the ideal places for EV chargers (DCQC) or charging stations (L1/L2).
Consider two cities a few hundred km or miles apart.
Most driving is in the cities, only a small fraction is between the cities. Almost all of this driving will be with slower charging only. Most charging will be at home or work. Oh, and what about apartments? It is far cheaper to add L1 (120V 15Amp) or L2 (240V 15-70Amp) charging stations to garages and parking spots than to try to build enough DCQC chargers. At home and/or work.
Then consider that most of the gas stations in cities don't need charging stations.Expect little use.
Most of the gas stations between the cities need to be larger numbers of charging stations than gas pumps due to shorter EV range than ICE and longer recharge times than filling times.

Brian said...

Phil, I think you're right and I think the Elektrek article made a similar argument - gas stations serving highway traffic could feasibly add EV charging and ultimately switch to being EV charging places, maybe with more full-service cafeterias etc. like some Scandinavian gas stations I've seen. Nudging them in this direction is probably a good thing. Rural gas stations might also be good places for these EV chargers, people might be traveling off highways or have some reason for why charging at home is problematic.

Requiring urban/suburban stations to install EV chargers that won't be used is the equivalent of imposing a special fee for being a gas station, then taking the money from the fee and setting it on fire. Maybe that too is a good thing - it is gas, after all, but there are better ways to do this.

Thomas said...

Maybe they could add a rule that the gas station may place their charging station up to X meter distance, which in urban settings would mean they could often put it near an amenity even if it formally belongs to the station.

FixedCarbon said...

Snape needs to move to Eugene.

Snape said...

Portland is like a bigger version of Eugene......I love ‘em both!

You’ve heard the latest, right?